As you all know Tegatech Australia has been delegated the task of distributing the EO UMPC device in Australia and New Zealand (ANZ). This week pricing was launched, and went live, at 2am on Wednesday the 29th of March. What became apparent very quickly was the welcomed response of the device to the Downunder market place.
So who’s buying?
Tegatech Australia can confirm orders from Software Vendors in the Realestate Sector, a Microsoft Evangelist in New Zealand, 24-hr Onsite Security companies, University Professors, the Australian Government (true!) and Uber Geeks across the country.
What does this tell us about the UMPC market place?
The IT space will always attract a division of early adopters that would almost buy anything that comes on the market, tested or untested. These guys anticipate vendor’s next moves, and have their favourite piece of plastic (MasterCard or Visa) at their disposal for rapid order placement. These same guys have received clearance from company CFO’s (usually the wife) and are capable of filling out most HTML order forms in less than 3 seconds flat.
Here’s what’s interesting. Tegatech Australia reports that of the first UMPC sales downunder less that 5% seem to fit this bill. So who ordered? What’s interesting is that most of the initial orders are from developers and corporations that have been long awaiting something larger than a PDA with more CPU processing power. Sure battery life is a concern but these guys know that if they establish themselves today then generation 2 and 3 of UMPC will bring them profitability so richly deserved.
The one factor that has yet to be given the focus is merits is the "power of IMK." From what I gather, ink-enablement of software applications is the next big step in increasing company profitability and company mobility. Given that ink (Tablet PC) came at such a premium in the past, it looks as though UMPC has filled a real hole in the IT market space; even if most companies were blissfully unaware of the hole prior to this point. [Mark my words]
How badly do you want a UMPC?
In Australia it seems that our public has learnt the hard way that if you want something then you gotta pay. Recently I read a comment under one of Rob Bushway's blogposts that Tablet Kiosk in the United States had to apologize for mistakenly charging credit cards prior to delivering product (UMPC). In this country Tegatech Australia chose a different tactic. They openly stated “allocation of UMPC devices will be given to clients with orders placed, and paid for, in a priority basis only. Only orders placed, and paid for, will be allocated units; simple as that!”
Everyone that has placed an order with Tegatech Australia know that delivery will not occur until the end of April 2006, and yet without hesitation, there’s been direct deposits made (EFT’s), credit card transactions conducted and checks posted and delivered personally at all hours of the night.
I’ve always advocated that the consuming public will tell us if a product is viable or not. In this case the viral marketing campaign started the UMPC wave, but it seems the general populous is more than content to take the ball and run with it from there.
Stay tuned to the UberTablet Blog while I report back on the activities of the UMPC Downunder… Have a great weekend!!!